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Service status and maintenance of Internet banks

Last Edit: 19/10/18

The online service of UK banks came under scrutiny and criticism by the mainstream media in September 2018. The BBC reported that customers of NatWest, RBS and Ulster Bank were all locked out of their account for consecutive hours during the daytime. The issue did not impact the banks telephone or ATM services, just their Internet banking systems, and was blamed on a "technical glitch", with the banks firewall taking the blame. Barclays Internet and telephone banking systems also suffered a “technical glitch” in September, that resulted telephone banking services being offline for up to seven hours.

Seeing as how critical Internet banking has become to most bank customers, you may be wondering if there is a way to check the service status of Internet banks? the answer is yes, most banks have a specific webpage that provides a service status. Listed below is the current webpage address for major high street banks in the UK.

As you would expect, not all banks provide a service status webpage, but most will email/text customers when planned maintenance is to take place. Most of the banks listed above are within the same banking groups, and therefore have similar service status webpages. The service status webpage will usually include the status of the following: mobile banking app, cash machines (ATMs), telephone banking, Internet banking, branches, credit card systems, payment systems, and the status of their website. The vast majority of the time the banks service will be working and will display a message such as "Everything is working as it should be" or "Service working normally".

Information and dates for planned maintenance -- of Internet banking systems -- is sometimes provided on the service status webpage of the banks; Barclays for example. Its extremely rare for planned maintenance to be conducted during daylight working hours. Maintenance is typically conducted during the hours of 00:00 – 06:00, and usually during the weekend; times when payments are typically delayed by standard, and are rarely made as the vast majority of people are asleep. During maintenance, customers typically cannot: make payments to accounts via Internet banking; or have any access whatsoever via Internet banking. During planned maintenance of Internet banking systems, customers can usually still make: card payments, withdraw cash from ATMs, use telephone banking, and use mobile banking apps.